Environmental and animal rights groups are opposing the creation of a new marine mammal facility with a ‘swim with captive dolphins’ program at Blackbeard’s Cay in the Bahamas. Many are saying that the plans for the facility were never made public and after repeated requests to government agencies, the permits have still not been released. But despite the controversy, the pens for the dolphins have already been installed.
Scientists recently discovered egg cases of the blackmouth catshark wedged amongst the corals of Mingulay Reef in Scotland. Scientists know so little about deep water corals–Mingulay Reef itself was only discovered a decade ago–that it came as a big surprise that catsharks were laying eggs down there. This discovery will help improve our understanding of deep-sea sharks.
A new study has shown for the first time that corals cannot fully acclimate to low pH conditions in their natural environment. Researchers studied corals growing where submarine springs naturally lower the pH of seawater and found that, while the corals could still grow, their skeletons were less dense which makes them more vulnerable to physical erosion. As atmospheric carbon dioxide continues to rise and ocean acidification continues, it will become more and more difficult for corals to form their hard calcium carbonate skeletons.
Copyright © 2013 by Marine Science Today, a publication of Marine Science Today LLC.